Dining Guide | Poetry on a Plate: Best Charcuterie in Phoenix
Charcuterie, the fancy French name for preserved meats, may have an intimidating air based on the name of what seems to be a basic hors d’oeuvre plate. Truth is, charcuterie is so much more. At its core, it is a delicious assortment of meats that are smoked, cured, braised, chopped and sliced. At its best, it represents an awe-inspiring combination of unique flavor combinations and stunning presentation. The Valley is rampant with culinary masters that have created a smorgasbord of charcuterie combinations that push textural boundaries. We’ve gathered a few of our favorites places for the best charcuterie in Phoenix and encourage you to check out this poetry on a plate…or board, slab or slate.
Six of the Best Charcuterie in Phoenix
Coup Des Tartes
1725 E. Osborn, Phoenix
Have you been longing to visit that quaint cafe you found in France? The one with all the charm, personality and decadent menu options you can’t stop thinking about? Forgo the pricey plane ticket and take a quick drive to Coup Des Tartes. The restaurant oozes romance and features a vibrant menu and impeccable service. Whether you opt for an immersive dining experience or a quiet conversation over a few bites here and there, you’d be remiss to pass on their charcuterie board. Your board will arrive with Three Pigs pate, Dijon, cornichons, a variety of cured meats, dried fruits, nuts, and toast. The thick moussey pate is airy while still maintaining a coarse texture. The acidity of the cornichons helps to neutralize some of the stronger cured meat flavors.
CoR Tapas & Wine
4500 N. 12th St., Phoenix
While driving along 12th street, you’ll become instantly aware of CoR Tapas & Wine; their bright purple building façade is unavoidable and immediately invokes a promise of fun behind the doors. Inside the metal gray contemporary interior is highlighted with bright pops of color throughout. The tapas menu encourages diners to bring friends and order several plates for sharing. No dish begs for sharing like their customizable CoR Board. Pick your choice of cheeses like a house made ricotta, manchego, goat cheese, and cabrales blue. CoR’s daily meat selection changes, however, you’ll always find Jamon serrano and soppressata. Your board will also come adorned with fresh fruit, seasonal jam, marinated olives, and Marcona almonds. The perfectly grilled bread slices allow for flavor building with that added char flavor to balance the salty components.
7100 N. 12th St., Phoenix
As one of the newer restaurants in the area and a creation of the team behind Luci’s Healthy Marketplace, Pomelo arrived at The Orchard with some pretty high expectations. The restaurant space was built on the site of one of Arizona’s first citrus farms and they are working hard to incorporate that history as well as citrus flavors into all corners of the menu. The menu features a selection of vibrant and refined classic American dishes with a unique Arizona twist. There is a lot to love here, and the chef’s stone is no exception. Mix and match from slices of pepperoni, hard salami, and tasso to snowy white cheddar and brie. Your stone will also be presented with roasted veggies, flavorful olives, and a sweet caramel nut brittle. Load up the thin marbled and toasted bread and you’ve easily got the makings of a great start to an incredible dinner.
5144 N. Central Ave., Phoenix
The success of Postino’s restaurant model has led to a total of six locations in Arizona and one in Colorado. An obvious draw to Postino’s is their wine café feel, but the fact that all of their locations are in historically relevant buildings lends additional charm. The light bites menu allows for plenty of conversation and sharing and becomes the perfect accompaniment to their impressive wine program. None can match more perfectly than their butcher’s block or pub board. The butcher’s block has more of a focus on the traditional charcuterie board, with a balanced selection of artisan meats and cheeses accompanied by Tuscan beans, flavorful olives, nuts and fresh crostini. This allows you to build flavors while the pub board is more about noshing on the sliced Schreiner’s sausage, aged cheddar, cornichons, corn nuts and MJ’s soft pretzels. No matter which selection you opt for they will pair perfectly with a craft beer or perfectly aged wine.
Stock & Stable
5538 N. 7th St., Phoenix
One of the newest inhabitants of The Colony, Stock & Stable combines the simplicity of the Midwest and the elegance and innovation of the current climate of the food scene here in the Valley to create a unique gastropub along “restaurant row’. The menu is creative without being overly complicated, varied without reading like a novel. Their salumi board is a stand out on the menu; impressive in size and flavor. The board will arrive with a combination of Dona Juana cantimpalitos cocktail sausages and Pamplona chorizo that offer a nice snap from the casing and a mild kick. The creminelli coppa and Tartufo salumi provide a little fat to the dish that enables the meats to melt in your mouth. Add in the grapefruit mostarda, house-picked vegetables, grape marmellate and Noble bread for an exceptional elevation in flavor and texture. This board is perfect for sharing with friends as an intro to your meal or alone as a solo fest of sorts.
5200 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix
The signature restaurant at Royal Palms Hotel is all about elegance and indulgence, from the Mediterranean-inspired décor and rich dark woods throughout to their vibrant and thoughtful menu that is seasonal and ingredient inspired. The food here will always be a topic of conversation based on the beautiful presentation and the care taken to match flavors and seasoning to really highlight the ingredients. The charcuterie slate is no exception. It is impressive in presentation, served on a large slate and will delight any carnivore. This slate offers up a delectable selection of cured meats personally selected by Chef Todd Allison that rotates based on quality and availability. Add to that perfectly seasoned Marcona almonds, thick jam, grainy mustard, buttery soft cheese, pickled vegetables and grilled herb bread. Finish things off with a glass or two of a full bodied wine and you’ll have your own savory story to tell the next time T. Cook’s comes up in conversation.
Do you have a favorite spot in Phoenix to get your charcuterie fix? Let us know so we can check them out!
*This article, written by Taryn Jeffries, was originally featured in the August 2016 issue of Uptown Magazine.*
© Taryn Jeffries 2016